Gunnar Nelson says that he is strongly against celebrities using their popularity to speak out about politics, explaining that their job is to “take people away” from the hardship of their lives.
“Musicians — and actors, too — our job is to entertain,” Gunnar said in a new interview with “Music Mania” podcast (see video below). “That’s our job. Our job is to entertain and give people a place where they can forget about the pressures of the real world, about [how] their boss is a dick, or about what’s going on politically in the world, or some phantom virus or all that stuff. Our job in moments like this is to take people away from that, not to immerse them back in it.
“When people start believing their own press releases… It’s a dangerous thing when you surround yourself just with people who agree with you,” he continued. “Look what happened to Elvis [Presley] and Michael Jackson — it’s a dangerous thing to do.
“Our opinions are no more important than anyone else’s, and I think there are a lot of artists out there that forget that. And I understand that they wanna make a difference. The problem is when they cross a line. No matter which side of the fence you’re on — it doesn’t matter. But their heads get big, they start believing their own press releases, and they think that they’re some authority on people and have browbeat them, when, frankly, it’s just kind of, like, shut up and do your job. Play the guitar, son. Write a great song. Make me happy. Remind me of the good old days, or introduce me to something that’s brand new where I can forget all this crap that’s going on. That’s it.
“There’ll be plenty of people who jostle for opinions on all topics,” Gunnar added. “But I just personally… I’m one of those guys… I think my job right now is to deliver an amazing song to people, because that’s what God put me on this earth to do. That’s it.”
Gunnar and his brother Nelson are the leaders of their band called NELSON which celebrated the 30th anniversary of the release of its double-platinum debut LP “After The Rain” this past June.
The Nelson are sons of rock royalty — their father was ’50s and ’60s rock and TV heartthrob Ricky Nelson — and grandsons of entertainers Ozzie and Harriet Nelson, and the nephews of celebrated actor Mark Harmon.
When Matthew and Gunnar hit No. 1 on the Billboard chart with NELSON‘s “(Can’t Live Without Your) Love & Affection”, it made the Nelsons the first family in history to have at least one No. 1 song across three generations.
NELSON had five Top 40 Billboard hits, four No. 1 MTV videos and has sold over 6.5 million albums worldwide.